The Last Cryptid

The Last Cryptid

by Trulynd W. Hall

Third place, Fiction, Heard/Alexandria Detention Center writing contest, July 2022

 “Is he dead?” the boy in a green tracksuit asks.

“Poke him with a stick again.” The girl with fiery red hair says while standing a safe distance away from the possibly dead body. The boy grabs a nearby twig and before he prods the lanky man stuck in the mud.

”Jay wait!” She exclaims. “What if he’s dead?”

“Jesse that’s what we’re trying to find out!” Jay tiredly expressed. Jay turns back to the body about to poke it.

“OK here goes.” He shakes his arms ready for the body’s reaction.

“Joy wait!” Jesse adds again. “What if…”

“Jesse please! Do you want me to poke it or not?” Joy asks while turning to Jesse. Only to find her now pale and pointing behind him. Jay made a guess to the reality behind his back. If it wasn’t a supposedly dead man walking it was way worse.

Jay nervously starts to turn around and witnesses the tall lanky body stand upright.

“He’s alive!” Jesse screams while flailing her arms in the air. The man didn’t look right, his proportions are out of place. Arms too long, legs too short and a particularly slim head. His left arm was twisted in the wrong direction as well.

“Are you OK?” chattered from Jay’s mouth. The man glances around before noticing his broken arm. He reaches for his arm.

“Stop it’s broken!” Jesse shouted in worry. Before her next sympathetic plea could release, the man grabs his arm and readjust it back in place with a loud snap in the process. The kids went and shuddered at the sight and sound.

“Hello?” Jay whimpered while backing away. Finally the man met their frames in his sight. His recently broken arm swings up and the kids flinch at the idea he was going to attack. Instead he reaches the back of his head and scratches the back of his shaggy hair. His baggy eyes meet theirs.

“Who are you brats?” he muttered.

“Brats!” Jesse shouts. “We found you lying in a ditch! Thought you were dead.! Jay let’s go! Never should have helped him!”

“You wanted to poke him, actually wanted ME to poke him,” Jay sarcastically added. Jesse gives him a glare that could cook bacon. The man interrupted the theatrics of the kids.

“It’s not safe here. Go home, he said while diving in his pockets. Jesse was about to add another angry retort but almost as if the man already knew her response, he cuts her off.

“No arguing, there’s something dangerous lurking in these woods.” He replies after pulling an object out of his dirty pants.

“Jay we’re outta here!  We don’t need to help some smelly old guy!” Jesse proceeds to stomp away. J fixates on the man’s hand which was now holding a yoyo.

“Jay let’s go!!” She shouts, already a few paces ahead of him. But Jay couldn’t look away, he felt like something amazing would happen in the next few moments.

“Jay Parker Williams!” Jesse voice yells from a distance. He hated when she used his full name. Jay turned around to berate her use of his middle name. That’s when it happened. As his back was turned a thunderous explosion boomed from behind him. The sound was loud enough to lift the kids a few inches in the air. Once again Jay looked at Jesse pointing with an even paler face them before.

“Jay. Don’t move.” Jesse mouthed. “Stay still.” Jay felt a breathy air behind him. His knees started to wobble and teeth chattered. He then heard a low growl right next to his ear. There was something behind him, something big and possibly hungry. A familiar voice yells sharply.

“Run it’s Bigfoot!” The lanky man starts while prepping his yo-yo. Jay finally glances back and sees the bigger than a bear, wilder than an ape creature looming over him. The man reiterates his command.

“Run!” He pleas to Jay.

“Hey! Hey! Over here smelly!” Jessie shouts waving her arms, attempting to look big. Bigfoot’s attention flies to her. Jesse frozen in fear attempts to flee but only manages to stumble to her feet. Jay in a hurry to save Jesse tosses rocks at the beast. The man from afar takes this chance a[nd] hurls the yoyo at Bigfoot. The rope was too long, yards long. It wraps around the beast leg stumbling it.

“Catch the yo-yo!” He shouts to at Jay. “Toss it around Bigfoot you two.” He added. The duo play catch with a yo-yo until Bigfoot was entangled in what seemed to be miles of rope. Bigfoot falls to the ground with a loud smash accompanied.

“Good job team!” The man gave a thumbs up.

“Team? Jesse snorted, waving her finger at his face.

“Is that really Bigfoot?” Jay asked, killing the argument. The man nodded. Jay’s eyes lit up!

“Cryptids are real?” Jay jumped gleefully, while Jesse rolled her eyes. The man makes a small smirk.

“Want to see?”